HB 363: Moratorium on School Closings

February 21, 2009

Rep. Cynthia Soto's HB 0363 putting a one-year moratorium on school closings PASSED the House Education committee on Thursday Feb19th...an important step in the process! It next goes to the House floor, then to the Senate.

GEM (Grassroots Education Movement) people (including parents) came from Chicago and met w/ reps yesterday, then a number of people testified this morning at the committee meeting. A partial victory!
See the press release from Designs for Change, a GEM member.


State Rep Cynthia Soto (4th Legislative District) has introduced a bill that would (1) place a one-year moratorium on school closings, turnarounds, phaseouts, and consolidations; (2) establish a Joint School Facilities Subcommittee consisting of 3 members from both the State House and State Senate Education Committees; and (3) institute an equitable process for school openings, closings, repairs, turnarounds, phaseouts, and consolidations with wide community involvement, which would be in effect once the moratorium ends. [The bill]

Below are the 17 House Co-Sponsors of House Bill 363.  This large number of co-sponsors reflects the work of the GEM coalition, affected schools, and Representative Soto herself:

Luis Arroyo - Karen A. Yarbrough - Sara Feigenholtz - Maria Antonia Berrios, Marlow H. Colvin, William Davis, Paul D. Froehlich, Annazette Collins, Elizabeth Hernandez, LaShawn K. Ford, Esther Golar, Deborah Mell, Arthur L. Turner, Michael K. Smith, Thomas Holbrook and Monique D. Davis

The more we can add to this list, the stronger the momentum will be to pass the bill. Please help by CALLING your state rep on this point. Soto's press release which has "talking points" you can use.

To find the State Representative for your school address or home address, go to: http://civicfootprint.org.  Enter the address and all the elected officials for that address will be displayed. Thanks to Don Moore and Designs for Change for working on the legislative piece.